Great films require great characters, compelling stories, a fantastic score, and an impactful setting. These aspects all come together to transport the viewer into the world of the film and give them the sense that they have become a part of the story. While inferior quality in any of these areas can result in the viewer losing the suspension of disbelief, the setting of the film is perhaps one of the most important factors to keeping a viewer engaged. A proper setting creates the world of the film and holds together the story as it unfolds in its fictional landscape.
When looking for great settings in New York city, a few popular tourist attractions come to mind, but perhaps one of the most compelling is The Roosevelt Hotel. With a rich history and architecture, The Roosevelt has appeared in countless New York films and even starred prominently in some like Maid in Manhattan as the hotel in which Jennifer Lopez’s character is employed. During the 1987 film Wall Street , The Roosevelt’s Grand Ballroom becomes the stage for Gordon Gekko’s powerful “Greed is Good” speech, which helped earn Michael Douglas an academy award for his amazing performance.
Even in modern film, The Roosevelt continues to be a commanding presence on the screen, making cameos in films like Men in Black 3 and The Dictator, where the hotel’s lobby was featured as the hotel Sacha Baron Cohen’s character stayed at during his visit to New York City. In the recent film Man on a Ledge, The Roosevelt’s ledges were the location where Sam Worthington stood 200 feet above the ground below in order to help further the movie’s plot.
No matter the era, a setting as powerful as The Roosevelt continues to draw attention and respect from filmmakers and viewers alike as it graces the silver screen time and time again. From classic movies like The French Connection, The Boiler Room, Quiz Show, Presumed Innocent, Monday Night Mayhem, Hanky Panky, The Hoax, and 1408 to modern favorites like Malcolm X, The Roosevelt will continue to be a driving force in the setting of cinema.